REIGNING Division One champions South Holland got their show firmly back on the road in two competitions last week as they racked up their first five-pointer of the season in Spalding and District Table Tennis League (sponsored by Magellan Solutions Ltd).
John Gilbert, turning out for the first time, took a double off opponents Lone Sharks, as did team-mate Richard Hammond, with the doubles added for good measure.
Keith Davey put up some sterling opposition, losing his last end 16-18.
However, JAG’s James Gibson and JDM Allsorts’ Phil Chandler’s first end went to 19-21, the longest end anyone can recall since the change of scoring. JDM took the game in the end and also the match. Chandler and Mark Willows both lost out to newcomer Eddie Haynes, but took the doubles to win the match 3-2.
Leading the pack are Defenders, who took out Bladerunners by the same score. For the Blades Dave Gibson did the double while Martyn Green and Jean White won one each plus the doubles for the win.
Defenders are at the top, but with just three points covering the top five that may not last.
Meanwhile, favourites Seriously Adrift have taken over first place in Division Two.
Richard Matthews and Reece Kerry made a clean sweep of the games against challengers Insidious, with Kerry living up to his Most Improved Player title against two of the stronger players in the division.
Chunky and Chunkier scored their second ‘fiver’ in a row by taking Ha’st out for the loss of just one end. Dave Coley and Paddy Palgrave are now just one off the top and four clear of the chasers.
There was also part of a match played when No Names’ Matt Childs took on Castle Sports. With the other games to come his team hold a 2–0 lead.
Elsewhere, South Holland’s revival was complete when they reached the semi-final of the Moulton Shield at the expense of Insidious. Richard Hammond was replaced in the line-up by Adam Sokol, but they still proved too strong, dropping just one end. They now meet Bladerunners.
Chunky & Chunkier lost out to Seriously Adrift for the second time this season when they went down 3-2 in the other unplayed tie. It was a close call, with three ends going all the way.
They are the only lower league side left and face JAG next.